Did these recent PR gaffes cross the line?
Poundland ? #ElfBehavingBad campaignPoundland?s Christmas 2017caused the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) to ban the offensive adverts from being reused on their social media accounts. ASA took action after there were 85 complaints from the British public against the bargain store, and stated that the adverts were banned for ?demeaning women?. The offensive posts included an image of a toy elf holding a tea bag between its legs with a female doll lying beneath it, another showed a toy elf and a bottle of de-icer placed in front of a car windscreen. The elf appeared to have drawn a pair of breasts in the ice and the ad was accompanied by the caption: ?Oh Elf, we know it?s nippy outside but not that kind of nippy! #ElfBehavingBad?. Although the adverts were banned they are still visible on Poundland?s social media pages.
Adidas ? Boston Marathon email subject lineLast year, Adidas sent out a marketing email to customers who participated in ?Boston Marathon which carried the subject line: “Congrats, you survived the Boston Marathon!” The email was branded “insensitive” and “extremely inappropriate”, given the history of the marathon after three people were killed and over 250 injured during the 2013 Boston Marathon terror attack close to the finish line. In a statement published on Twitter, Adidas said it was “incredibly sorry” for the “insensitive email subject line” and “deeply apologise for our mistake.”
Pepsi ? Kendal Jenner campaignThe Pepsi campaign with a political message was pulled near enough straight away after a huge amount of backlash claiming it was insensitive to the Black Lives Matter movement. Keeping up with the Kardashian?s star and model Kendal Jenner featured in the advert and walked up to a police officer in part of a protest and handed him a can of the soft drink helping to ease the tension and making the officer smile. The advert was widely criticised for appearing to trivialise demonstrations aimed at tackling social justice causes, suggesting that protestors and police would get along better if the former were kinder.
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